Bonanza – Bodacious eBay Competitor Gives Birth to Fresh Merchandising Format

(This is NOT a paid review or advertisement) – Please Note: Since the publication of this article “Bonanzle” has changed their moniker to “Bonanza”, the facts remain the same…

Bonanzle (pronounced Bon-an-zle), a start up out of Kirkland Washington, is positioning itself as a viable option to eBay and Craigslist. Bonanzle launched on June 1st, 2008 and is actively recruiting sellers and buyers with grass roots efforts and social media marketing. In less than a month of operations Bonanzle claims an item count of 72,000 and over 2000 registered users (September 16th, 2008).

Bonanzle is a newly launched online marketplace that aims to take what’s best about Craigslist and eBay, and build on those to create something that startles and delights its users.

One new user posted the following comment on

I am so happy this was the easiest site that I have ever listed on. I set up & posted 4 items in record time & will be adding more over the next few days. Spectacular & fun….just what many of us have been looking for. Same user ID. Imported feedback, a class act with immediate views all while I am multi-tasking. Thanks !!!!!

Bonanzle promotes itself as the “alternative to lookalike eBay alternatives” (personally I would recommend a better copywriting effort on that tagline). I think they have a point however, what the Bonanzle team have created is a fast and easy to use venue for both buyers and sellers with a fresh inviting new look and attitude.

It is more than an alternative to alternatives, Bonanzle is a new animal entirely.

Bonanzle has taken some of the basic concepts of Craigslist (clean design, fast browsing and minimalistic appearance) and the basic concepts of the original eBay marketplace (a socially built marketplace for online commerce, easy to sell and buy, with a graphically pleasing look) and they have trumped both major venues with features that improve the entire concept of selling and buying at an online Bazaar.


  • No fee for sellers or buyers, we are a community
  • Post an item for sale in less than 60 seconds
  • Talk with buyers and sellers in real time via instant messaging feature
  • True simplicity as it should be
  • Import your Craigslist and eBay listings
  • Tailored for sellers with multiple items to sell
  • Host a 1-3 hour “Bonanza” which gets prominently featured throughout the site
  • Price recommending feature
  • Import your feedback from eBay

Bonanzle has grasped the idea that online commerce can be and is often a social activity. Both buyers and sellers want to feel as though they belong to a safe and friendly place where they may contact one another without fear of big brother watching everything they do (pssst – eBay 1984 is OVER).

One of the most interesting aspects of Bonanzle is the built in chat capabilities installed with every Bonanzle Booth. Communication and transparency are huge factors when it comes to transacting business online. Allowing the open and direct communication between buyers and sellers in this manner can only help the marketplace Bonanzle is developing.

The site is constantly being updated and improved by the founder Bill Harding. One only needs to visit his open changelog page to see how much sweat equity Bill is putting into this start up.

Here is one days example of the hard work being put into this site by the founder:


  • Featured items for buy page and home page randomly weighted based on the number of times they’ve been tagged
  • Home page now updates items shown at least once per hour, instead of once every couple days
  • Offers can no longer be marked as “completed” until they have been verified as paid for, or until seller has accepted offer
  • Ebay importer now tells people how many jobs are in line before theirs
  • Ebay importer now tells the user if items weren’t imported because their eBay store was empty
  • Added button for seller to mark offers as paid for buyers when GC/Paypal don’t verify paidness automatically
  • Fixed users not being saved if they enter via “One click selling,” then proceed to register via the standard new item form.
  • Packing list now shows quantity of items sold
  • Added a couple more graphics for users to use for their email footers and etc. via the assets page
  • Changed text on My Bonanzle page slightly

If there was just one eBay competitor to watch, I might just put my money on this one.

The easy methodology for switching to Bonanzle from eBay and the quick and easy methods for getting new products listed are big pluses for eBay sellers looking elsewhere. Buyers will be pleased with the simple search and clean look, along with he fantastic image viewer. I really hesitate to call this an eBay competitor because it is so different and refreshing.

Some other highlights to selling on Bonanzle include:

  • Tagging system – users can “tag” your listings with the following easytags for better placement in search: “This item is exceptionally…Bizarre, Beautiful, Funny, Cool, Well Priced”
  • Inventory can be imported from eBay, Craigslist, or CSV inventory spreadsheet format
  • Bonanzas – A Bonanzas is a brief (1-3 hour) sale on some or all of your items, where you wheel and deal (in real time, if the seller is logged in) to sell as many items as possible in a short amount of time. Bonanzle drives buyer traffic from the home page and elsewhere to the Bonanzas of sellers during the time allotted.
  • Payment options – Google Checkout, Paypal, Cash, Check, Money Order – Bonanzle is open to almost all methods for sellers to get paid.
  • Easily accessible “help” pages written in a format real people can understand
  • Automatic Googlebase and Oodle export – This is a big plus, placing sellers merchandise on multiple sites worldwide and all links leading back to the sellers Bonanzle Booth.
  • Direct Communication with the founder and staff is not only possible, but easy and friendly. How much is that feature worth alone?

Check out Bonanzle – if you like it, they have a way for you to get rewarded for spreading the Bonanzle story…

Grass Roots Campaign & Contest – Prizes for Spreading The Word

Bonanzle doesn’t want to settle for being that “cool little marketplace” that marketplace experts love but none of your friends have heard of. The more buyers and sellers learn about Bonanzle, the more fun and the more sales for us all. We think that now is the time we set our sights for 10,000 users and 100,000 items!

How can we do it? Easy: We give you goodies for helping us spread the word! Now you are probably thinking, “You don’t have to give us anything, we love Bonanzle and are happy to tell our friends without gimmicky promotions.” However, you are probably then coming to your senses and realizing, “But then again, a little free schwag couldn’t hurt!”

That’s the spirit!

What: “The Grass is Greener at Bonanzle” Contest
When: Entries will be accumulated and prizes given out from September 6th through October 31st
How: Win great prizes for helping Bonanzle spread the word and signing up users. Tell your family, friends, customers, co-workers, email contact list, anyone you think might benefit from our community… and get them over here to sign up, pronto!

Each new user who joins our community and signs up for this newsletter 1 Entry (for them)
Each user who accepts your invitation to join Bonanzle* 5 Entries (for you)
Each item purchased by a buyer 1 Entry (for the buyer)

Announcer, What Will They Win?

We’re going to pick a user every Sunday in September and October, starting September 21st. Here are the prizes each for week:

PrizeGiveaway DateDrawn from Which Entries
Canoncamera Canon PowerShot 7.1MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical ZoomSeptember 21Entries received prior to September 20th
Netflix One year, two-at-a-time Netflix subscriptionSeptember 28 Entries received between September 21st and September 27th
Wiifit Wii FitOctober 5Entries received between September 28th and October 4th
Chicken Chicken SuitOctober 12Entries received between October 5-11th
Ipod Apple iPod Touch 8GBOctober 19 Entries received between October 12-18th
Mystery Mystery Gift WeekOctober 26 Entries received between October 19-25th
Hoof Any Item on Bonanzle Priced $200 or LessOctober 31All entries submitted between October 26th and 30th

Additionally, for the users that refer the first, second, and third most users to the site from now until October 31st, we will also be offering your choice of any item on Bonanzle priced up to $300, $200, and $100, respectively!

As they say, “the more entries you have, the better your chance at taking home one of these fabulous prizes.”

From our humble headquarters in Kirkland, Washington we thank you!itor

See full contest rules here

Bonanzle has some interesting ideas and they seem to be catching on with both buyers and sellers alike. I imported my eBay items into Bonanzle, why not give it a try yourself, it only take a few minutes to set up a Bonanzle Booth (once you get over how uncomplicated it is to do so).

eBay this is not, Amazon this is not, Craigslist – nope not that either…

This place can only be compared to itself as it is truly a Bonanzle!

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37 Responses to Bonanza – Bodacious eBay Competitor Gives Birth to Fresh Merchandising Format

  1. Henrietta September 22, 2008 at 12:21 pm #

    How lovely to start the week with happy news! I am so tired of all the chaos and anger at the Evil Empire. The site positively reeks of confusion from buyers who can’t FIND anything and despair from sellers whos sales are tanking.

    As a buyer I was thrilled to (be able to) find Christmas presents for my family on Bonanzle, such a pleasure to use one click purchase with Google Checkout, no endless ‘are you sure you want to use your credit card’ reminders. Note to PayPal yes I am sure, that is why I chose to pay with my CC in the first place.

    One small correction; there are no listing fees but there are sale fees which are guaranteed NOT to increase through 2010.
    NO fees on cash, check or MO sales
    Sales under $10, fee is $0.50 (if you sell four $2 items in one sale it is 50c total not 50c per item)
    Sales between $10 to under $50 fee is $1
    Sales between $50 to under $100 fee is $2
    Sales between $100 to under $500 fee is $3
    Sales between $500 to under $1000 fee is $5
    Sales over $1000 fee is $10

    Bonanzle is truly enabling sellers and getting out of the way, to quote our friend Randy. It is a solution to eBay’s problems.

  2. Mary September 22, 2008 at 4:41 pm #

    Bonanzle has a great vibe–I really feel as if I’m wandering around a traditional brick & mortar marketplace, eclectic and full of surprises! And setting up a shop of my own was actually fun. All in all, a great experience.

  3. Coelacanth Books September 22, 2008 at 7:36 pm #

    I’ve been investigating a variety of alternative selling sites and so far Bonanzle is the freshest and most interesting of the bunch. It is clean, simple, easy to use for both buyers and sellers, and integrates some great interactive features. It’s taken a new approach to the “marketplace” and put some of the fun back into buying and selling.

  4. Cleo September 22, 2008 at 7:41 pm #

    Bonanzle’s organic energy and simplicity led us right in the door to stay!

    I never entered a new selling venue that I could navigate in less than a week or two. This was a first! Set up a booth in an hour or less, then listed an item on a short page with all the elements needed for selling. Our firecracker was lit!

    We know that any buyer would enjoy the experience as much as we do as a seller!

  5. Susan Leak September 22, 2008 at 8:26 pm #

    Thank you for the wonderful review! Bonazle IS the site to watch. The engery over there is through the roof and the sellers are second to none. Not to mention some of the most unique items around!
    Stop in!
    I have linked this article to the squidoo group at

    Thanks again scott!

    susan…aka Renagade

  6. Kelly September 22, 2008 at 9:36 pm #

    I am having FUN at Bonanzle. It’s so nice to be able to enjoy selling again after I quit ebay in Jan/08 after 8 years! Bonanzle has just what I need. I tried a few other auction/selling sites but none have all the potential as Bonanzle does.

  7. Bonnie September 23, 2008 at 1:39 am #

    truly a breath of fresh air – stupid fast customer service (gotta love that) so simple to list a caveman can do it and fabulous helpful commmunity of sellers – remarkable.

  8. L Bryan September 23, 2008 at 8:06 am #

    I’ve been in this business using mostly Alt sites since 1999, and I have never seen this kind of growth. It’s phenomenal, and it isn’t slowing down! Everytime I log in I can see how many members Bonanzle has… there’s a running count displayed in My Bonanzle and that number is getting bigger and bigger by the day! Go, Bonanzle, go!

  9. Lori September 25, 2008 at 1:53 pm #

    Bonanzle is truly a Breath of Fresh Air! It’s so very simple and easy! What gets me most is that if you have a question and you email support, the creators themselves actually reply to you. They actually read your question and quickly get back to you with very real intelligent answers! Unbelievable! I just love it!

  10. Jamiro September 25, 2008 at 2:07 pm #

    Home on the range never was better than this. Real human beings on the other end of support emails and actually mingling with sellers and buyers making sure we’re all happy. The robots at the evil emporium quit caring long ago about anything except the money. On Bonanzle it’s okay for us to be friends, over there we can’t even have each other’s email addresses –sheesh.

    Yea it’s better on Bonanzle. I buy and sell online and I now call it home. Come see us, we’re growing and glowing!!!!!

  11. Joe Leach September 25, 2008 at 2:18 pm #

    Hey Scott, great article. Items are easy to add and it is easy to contact Bill or Mark with a question and they are happy to answer. Thanks for you review. Joe a/k/a JoesTreasures

  12. Mary September 25, 2008 at 2:49 pm #

    With all the major changes on the bay I have been looking at alternative sites for over a year. This is the one and only site from the minute I looked at it & knew it was THE ONE! I am no computer whiz by any stretch of the imagination but this site is so so simple! A major plus for customers is the ability to chose their mode of payment with each seller. As the bay eliminates use of “paper money” we gladly accept money orders, checks, paypal and google. Please take a few minutes and come look around – you’ll be glad you did!
    Mary & Russ aka sofyblu2

  13. Marla September 25, 2008 at 2:56 pm #

    Bonanzle gives me great hope for the future of selling on line. Created just in time as eBay bottoms out. It is no longer fun or profitable to sell there and no reason to stay.

    Bonanzle allows you to run/mind your own business with help from both fellow sellers. The “Big Guys” listen and are real honest to goodness people there helping too.

    Bonanzle puts the “old” site to shame…e will not die of old age…they will succumb to their own doings.

    Yes, Bonanzle is the answer to the situation…fresh, growing and full of life.


  14. Pacesetter Pam September 25, 2008 at 3:19 pm #

    I Love Bonanzle! My life has become free of fear and stress of feeling like my whole collecting/selling world could be destroyed with one malicious or crazy buyer on ebay. I have put my positive and uplifting new attitude into building! For the first time in years, I’m taking the time to do some buying as well. I’m enjoying buying on Bonanzle as well as learning how to list in a simple and stress free atmosphere.

    I have had much fun promoting Bonanzle and inviting friends, family and thousands of past happy customers to come take a look. I feel perfectly confident that all will enjoy it and see the fresh air over there.

    I Won The Camera Raffle for referrals! I can’t believe it! I really won!! It’s on it’s way to me right now! I’ve never won much of anything, ever and definitely never on a site I use to sell my collectibles and vintage necessities! We are all building a very pleasant community. Come see, I believe you will be pleasantly surprised by Bonanzle!

    Pacesetter Eclectica

  15. Peter September 25, 2008 at 5:40 pm #

    BONANZLE is great! Not only are Bill and Mark friendly, responsive, and good humored – so are the folks that sell and buy at the site.

    There are so many unique items. I’ve enjoyed watching the offerings explode since I joined up at the start of August.

  16. Cabanalolita Unique3 October 6, 2008 at 4:13 pm #

    Bonanzle offers the seller something that’s missing on other online marketplace sites, it’s called the “Fun Factor.” It’s a great place that has put the “Friendly” back in buying and selling. The organic growth is remarkable. If your a seller looking for a place to sell your unique merchandise, then look no more, come on over to Buyers, if you’re looking for a deal, then Bonanzle is the place to shop! The Bonanza sales add to the excitement, I’ve found some wonderful deals shopping at the Bonanza sales! If you would like to read more about Bonanza sales, check out this blog.

    Cheers to the Bill and Mark, they are dedicated to making it a success! Come on over and join in the fun, just say Unique3 sent you! Free to join, only need an email address and a user ID. No personal information required. Fast and easy, that’s the Bonanzle way!

  17. Virginia October 27, 2008 at 6:32 am #

    After visiting this site several times over the last couple of months and made early Christmas purchases, found sellers quite helpful, willing to negotiate prices without a hitch and receive quality items.

    Think we are going to switch our preference of buying on Ebay and moving over to Bonanzle. We were pleasantly surprised to find the purchase process was quite simple!

  18. Rykar October 27, 2008 at 7:05 am #

    I enjoyed your great article and all the comments from other Bonanzler’s.

    Seems like I may be a day late and a dollar short. But, I just couldn’t resist adding my 2 cents in even at this late date.

    I’ve never been into posting on blogs. I was satisfied with reading them. But, since I’ve been a Bonanzler, I want to share this wonderful selling venue with the world.

    I love Bonanzle. I love the warm sincere friendliness of the community. The customer support is awesome. Although, with the detailed easy to follow help guides very liitle is needed. That’s very important to a senior citizen without formal computer training.

    I’ve been on Bonanzle for 30 days after leaving eBay after 9 years with 100% feedback. 4 stars at 5, and shipping at 4.8, of course!

    I’ve never felt better health wise. I no longer have a pit in my stomach wondering when the other shoe is going to drop with another ridiculous change that will affect my business. Nor, do I have days of depression thinking … what am I going to do and the what if’s.

    I am so thankful to have found Bonanzle!

  19. CabinFever October 27, 2008 at 9:34 am #

    As of Oct 27 our stats have made unprecedented leaps! Doubled the user base to 6388 and listings are 245,535 and rising daily. Amazing for a new selling venue that is so young!

    The owners are also responding to each growing pain with amazing speed. We had some slowdowns for a short period of time earlier this month, but those bumps were ironed out quickly.

    Now they have added the Google Analytics option. I am loving this. After all the hassles elsewhere, it is still hard to believe how easy this is.

  20. Bobbi85710 October 27, 2008 at 10:38 am #

    Bonanzle is the most rapid growing internet commerce site ever. It has been tailored to the interests and expectations of sellers and buyers alike. No doubt about it, it is “The Internet Darling”.

    Proof is in the pudding. I have a booth there and I have had:
    Booth views: 6457. I never saw those kind of views on the other site in the 11+ years I was there.

    Bonanzle is doing everything right and there are others trying to imitate the feel, the look, the success but you can’t improve on perfection. If you haven’t been by yet, come and say hi. You’ll be glad you did!

  21. funkygarb October 27, 2008 at 11:06 am #

    For any “old” ebayers who can remember the true feeling of the ebay community camaraderie 10 years ago or so, you’ll have deja vu for sure when you step into the bonanzle discussion boards.
    That is what clinched it for me.
    But if you’re not just after warm-fuzzy go with your gut feelings, then check the stats. It’s just like everyone has said, number of registered users, number of items posted– For Bonanzle-ites these are exciting times! It’s such a grass-rootsy site but the founders are there 24/7 putting 250% into the site. That makes me want to give 250 too!
    If you are shopping for an ebay alternative, check out Bonanzle. I can’t say enough about it and I’m an old die hard ebayer (1997)!!

  22. alicesgiftshop October 27, 2008 at 1:09 pm #

    I love Bonanzle. The fun in selling is back. It is super easy to set up your booth. I joined the end of August and this site has grown fast as lighting speed.
    Everybody is so nice and the owners are great. You ask a guestion and you get an answer by a human.
    If you are looking for a new home this is it. Give it a try. It is free to sell.

  23. Aja Blue October 27, 2008 at 2:47 pm #

    From a buyer’s point of view, Bonanzle is a blast. The home page features an ever-changing block of pictures of various items found all over Bonanzle. Click on any one of them, and you are in that seller’s booth where you can chat with the seller in real time. (But only if you want to.)

    The selection of items available to purchase is growing all the time, and with the Google Checkout option available, I plan on doing all my Christmas shopping there. (Need a nice plush men’s robe… hint hint lol)

  24. Colleen Jones October 28, 2008 at 7:52 am #

    Wow, what a great article truly capturing the Bonanzle spirit! I love having a booth on Bonanzle and it took me all of two seconds to get caught up in Bill Harding’s enthusiasm. Bonanzle has alot of heart and alot of soul, from the top down and this grass roots momentum will propel Bonanzle to success!

  25. Action Healthy Life October 29, 2008 at 9:46 am #

    I had a customer that made a purchase from me off of ebay. With her purchase I included information about my booth at Bonanzle. She stopped by and purchased an item from Bonanzle and then ……Opened her own booth!!!

    Ya see, That’s what Bonanzle does to you. It’s a warm and transparent market place. I have so much fun just stopping by a booth and have a live chat!!

  26. sweetmotif October 30, 2008 at 11:41 am #

    Bonanzle is a nice place to call home. Management is friendly and answers questions quickly. The community of sellers are very helpful and upbeat. The site is increasing in traffic (sellers and buyers) daily. The site’s features and simplicity of use are great!

  27. renagade December 29, 2008 at 6:38 am #

    Man! has this site grown! Under the steady hand of Bill Harding, Mark Dorsey and the rest of the Bonanzle boyz, as become a true force to reckon with in the e-commerce world. If you haven’t visited bonanzle lately you really should!
    Thanks Bill, for creating such a great site! 2009…here we come!

  28. Becky January 2, 2009 at 7:29 pm #

    Boy do I have fun transfering my items from Ebay to bonanza, it took less that 5 minutes (all 400 items). So easy to use to sell , i just love it! and it accept Google Checkout, which is more reliable than paypal (what a nightmare!).

    I just can get over how simple , fun and easy to ad and sell in here. Put Ebay to shame.

    What a great web site! I hope it grows and grows and buyers will love it!.

    Can’t wait to for 2009.

  29. Susan January 10, 2009 at 11:23 am #

    I have been a book seller on eBay for the past 5 years. I have done well over the years building a repeat customer base and welcoming new customers every day. I still have my eBay site. I have also imported all of my listing to a new site Bonanzle is free to list and free to have up to 4 photos. The guys who run the show there are very good at what they do. They will personally answer you and even ask your opinion in the forums. You can chat live with a person who is browsing your items and interact with other sellers.

    I guess after researching the many alternatives, I have found this to be the best. The display when you first log in to Bonanzle is professional. It is a clean, refreshing, easy to use site with “booths” for the sellers who offer what ever payment type they choose. Yes, it is a breath of fresh air!

    The beauty of it is that the seller can be linked to Google Base where your items will eventually appear at the top of the pages when your item is searched. And this is free! There are FVF’s, but minimal compared to eBay.

    The site is growing leaps and bounds everyday. Of course, it doesn’t have the notoriety that eBay does, YET. If you, as a seller, want a great alternative and grow with this site, it can’t hurt at all to list your items parallel to what you currently have listed on eBay and eventually get out from under the grips of a “sinking ship”.

    So, come on over and check it out. You will find many eBay refugees, in fact most of the sellers are. Many former PowerSellers that are making the transition, one of them is me.

  30. dany February 4, 2009 at 9:27 am #

    BOnanzle is good
    barnbid is free

  31. JERRY February 8, 2009 at 12:31 pm #


  32. Kathy February 24, 2009 at 1:09 pm #

    I too joined Bonanzle about 2 weeks ago. The community is great and love all the features there. It’s easy and fun to list your products and the community is behind you 100%. I love that I am able to talk to the customers if they have any questions in real time.

    Bonanzle is a class act. I quit selling on eBay last Sept and glad that I found a place I can call home.

  33. kirby March 28, 2009 at 2:35 am #

    Bonanzle Good marketplace.I have fun love it.hope bonanzle grow fast.

  34. Sarah July 18, 2010 at 1:23 pm #

    Wow I can not say enough good stuff about Bonanzle, it has rocketed, and is the best market place to sell, all those who are serious sellers will open a Bonanazle acount, because they have all that is good in the market, it will be the next Billion Dollar company, and not at the expense of all the great sellers and buyers, but because they see the consumer as real people and not as dollar signs. eBay was a power house in its own right, but got very greedy and decided to rob everyones accounts, and still do, eBay will not recover from this shift of sellers because of that dirty greed, and in fact will face huge loses’s. Due to that greed. Look you can rob some of the people some of the time, but you cant rob all the people all the time. and thats what they did. So all those hard working sellers, and buyers are free to swim in cleaner water. Go Bonanzle. We are all watching and saying Thank you for changing the Mood of the market Place and making it FUN!
    Thank you
    Sarah Mitchell Small town Dittmer. MO


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